Mexican government to use private hospitals to treat COVID-19 patients

Mexico has registered a surge in the number of coronavirus cases and deaths in recent weeks

The Mexican government will use private hospitals to treat COVID-19 patients
Authorities and private hospitals will collaborate in the fight against the virus - Photo: Gabriela Pérez Montiel/CUARTOSCURO.COM
English 13/04/2020 17:07 Perla Miranda Mexico City Actualizada 14:28
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Amid the health emergency sparked by COVID-19, the federal government has reached an agreement with private hospitals so that these are turned into special units to treat coronavirus patients

José Ignacio Preciado Santos, the Secretary of the General Health Council, said the “Council has established a collaboration with institutions or private organizations that provide medical assistance and what could mean the expansion of the capacity to treat the novel coronavirus in Mexico.”

After Mexico’s Health Ministry registered a surge in COVID-19 cases and coronavirus-related deaths, Preciado Santos launched the Hospital Conversion Plan for the treatment of COVID-19. 

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At least 146 private hospitals will join the initiative. This means there will be 1,732 hospital beds for COVID-19 patients. Ignacio Preciado added that “We have a total of 6,169 beds, with the conversion of 1,106 COVID-19 beds and the expansion of 626 to handle the emergency, in total, we have over 1,700 for this.”

Moreover, the official emphasized that “all hospitals are certified, they have an ethics committee for the treatment of patients, for difficult decisions of terminating life. It’s an effort being made by private practice in Mexico to support the display made by the health sector, the important point is that we have to be prepared, we are not in those definitive phases (sic), but we have to be prepared.”

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On April 12, President Andrés Manuel López Obrador announced his administration had signed an agreement with private hospitals so that health authorities use half of their beds for a month, during the phase three of the contingency plan. 

According to the President, the private institutions will not profit from the deal as the medical attention will cost the minimum price.

With this agreement, all those who contract the virus will receive medical attention and the intensive care units at hospitals will not be crowded. 

In total, private hospitals will allow the use of 3,300 hospital beds; 500 of them are located in intensive care units.

The hospitals who joined the initiave include ABC, Ángeles, Médica Sur, Grupo Torre Medica, Hospital San Javier, Dalinde, among others. 

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On April 13, during his daily news conference, President López Obrador officially signed the agreement that establishes private hospitals will treat IMSS, ISSSTE, Insabi, Pemex, SEDENA, and Navy beneficiaries for free during the public health crisis.

From April 23 to May 23, private hospitals will use half of its beds for patients with different illnesses. This way, public hospitals will have 12,500 beds to treat COVID-19 patients. 

During the news conference, López Obrador thanked the owners of private hospitals for joining the initiative. 

Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard thanked the business owners for their solidarity. 


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